July 21, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

The Benefits of Aging in Place

Ninety percent of seniors should stay in their own homes to the extent possible. A person’s home is the place they’re most agreeable—it’s well known to them and provides solace. But in the event that he moves out to an assisted living group or nursing home, he’s faced with new beginnings once again. He may even need to share a room with a stranger. These adjustments can be very difficult for seniors.

Most home care agencies assign one Certified Home Health Aide (CHHA) to a client or per case, which makes clients more comfortable in receiving consistent care, which is not necessarily the case in nursing homes. A typical nursing home may have different Certified Nurses Aides (CNAs) on different shifts with multiple clients or residents assigned to them. When it come to nutrition, clients in a homecare setting usually make the choice on what to eat with regard to budgeted, therapeutic meals. There isn’t much choice on what is served in a nursing home. Family input and visitation to the client’s home is mostly unlimited, and in line with the client’s wishes.

Financially, home care is more affordable than living in a nursing home. A survey done by Genworth in 2015 shows that senior citizens and their families will spend anywhere from $231 to $426 per day just for a semi-private room at a nursing home setting in New Jersey. The survey shows that CHHA care received in the comfort of your home will cost an average of $11 to $26 per hour, and duties may include bathing, grooming, light housekeeping, errands and other ADLs. In the homecare setting, the nurse, the client and/or family will determine how many hours of service will be cost effective and beneficial to the client.

Some clients and families find it more affordable to choose a private home health aide or a companion who is not certified by the state of New Jersey. There is quite a bit of risk involved when hiring untrained personnel to take care of your loved ones. Having a certified Home Care Agency will ease that burden. The state of New Jersey requires that Home Care Agencies hire registered and certified CHHAs. All CHHA in New Jersey are fingerprinted and issued licenses by the New Jersey Board of Nursing. Home care agencies require reference checks and a criminal background check from the state government’s database for criminal records. Unlike unlicensed private aides, the CHHA is supervised by registered nurses to ensure the safety of the client and the quality of the services given. TB testing and physicals are required by agencies prior to the start of work, which helps eliminate and prevent the spread of disease. With agencies, a nurse or supervisor is always available to intervene when a complaint is filed, and immediate change in aide or nurse may be necessary. Hiring a private aide may lack all these qualities and may put a client at risk for abuse and other health-related risks. The cost of hiring a private aide may cost more at the end of the day if you hire the wrong person.

By Richard Appiah RN, President,
Royal Hearts Health Care

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